VIGILANCE and VENGEANCE
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          "Vengeance is mine!" sayeth the Lord, but nobody really wants to wait that long, especially in these "get out of my way" days. "An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth, now, baby!" Am I surprised about any of this? Yes, as a matter of fact I didn't expect to see this happen in my lifetime. Like the Berlin Wall, or the assassination of John F. Kennedy; events that you just don't figure you will witness, or ones you hope you don't have to. Considering the powers that be had him in their crosshairs a decade ago, I figured there wouldn't be another chance, especially after the great blunder of invading Iraq to kill somebody there. A warm up if you will. Once again, we started an illegal war, in a place where we didn't belong, with people who, fundamentally never wanted us there in the first place. I always supported our troops, even if I didn't agree with our government's decisions to go to war, or other agendas. I learned one thing for sure from my sixties experiences protesting the war in Southeast Asia. If you don't have a valid reason for starting one, it will cost you much more than you think once you begin. And, you will be sorry. A recent article posted on Military.com stated, "The U.S. and key allies fighting Taliban-led insurgents in Afghanistan issued statements Monday that the death of Osama bin Laden, who once found shelter there, would not mean a speedy end to the war or a rapid withdrawal of international troops." Still, there were fresh arguments that the real war against al-Qaida had shifted to beyond Afghan borders. Well, duh.
           Now that all is said and done, my question still remains, "Why are we there?" I don't have a problem with Islam, the Jews, Protestants, or the Christians. I dig the great prophets, Abraham, Solomon, Moses, etc., all very cool cats. Buddha, Mohammed, and Jesus, themselves Middle Easterners (although I'm not a religionist) provided us instructions about how to live, some of which I try to obey; let's say those rules offer a thinking man a proper perspective for living. Number one rule: Love one another.
           Where in the world do people hold one another accountable to such a concept? Not in America, and clearly, not in the Middle East. It makes sense to me why God sent his messengers on their missions into the desert. I wanted no war and I wanted to stay the hell out of the Middle East, yet deep down in my heart of hearts I wanted revenge on whoever was responsible for the attack on my country in the worst terrible way. Revenge is the great motivator for warring factions throughout the world since the beginning of time. In this day and age, even if we might not believe it, we profess the politically correct mantra that revenge is not acceptable. We should not commit ourselves to actions based on revenge. The realty is that 21st century civilization demands that, "Somebody is going to pay." It's how humankind operates and we all like to think about how we could take matters into our own hands. On 9/11, I hoped our leaders would handle things in a real and present dangerous way, immediately. All would have understood. Our reasons didn't change for spearheading this most recent operation, nor are our feelings really different from those we had ten years ago. They say the desert waits; so did we. We were vigilant and took the measures we said we would take. The real mission has finally been accomplished.
Father Reagan's Children
John Nippolt
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